One advantage of the Google Pixel compared with some of the competition is that the kernel uses ‘Energy Aware Scheduling,’or EAS. EAS is a technology that improves battery life and the latest rumor is that OnePlus is bringing it to OnePlus 5.
The rumor arrives from French Android website, FrAndroid, who spoke to somebody close to OnePlus. The story is that OnePlus is working on an energy aware scheduler to be built into the kernel of OxygenOS 4.6, the next update to their operating system. At this time, it is believed that OxygenOS 4.6 will enable Energy Aware Scheduling for the OnePlus 5 and its Snapdragon 835 chipset, with the older OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T not mentioned in the report. However, the OnePlus 3T shares the same chipset as the Google Pixel devices in the shape of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 821, so we are confident OnePlus could enable EAS on the slightly older device.
Energy Aware Scheduling is designed to improve the power efficiency of multi-core processors. The technology gives the operating system smarter control over how it distributes tasks to different chipset application cores. It is especially useful for big.LITTLE architecture designs, which encompasses many of Qualcomm’s chipsets in the 600 and 800 families from the last two years, and even some of the lower 400-series chips. EAS technology is available on later Linux kernel builds (as used by the Google Pixel) but needs to be enabled and optimized by individual device manufacturers. This is because ARM’s kernel does not include hardware-detection as standard, which needs to be written and included.
The source claims that the changes to OxygenOS could dramatically improve battery life, which might see the OnePlus 5 showing seven hours of screen-on use for half a battery. Depending on how the OnePlus 5 is being used, this could represent a doubling of battery life, which would seem unlikely. Perhaps the source is claiming these battery life improvements under optimum conditions rather than the daily grind of using our smartphones.
We can expect EAS being used by more devices across the industry as manufacturers and customers seek improved battery life. This could include many of 2017’s Android flagship devices, and if the manufacturers incorporate and enable EAS, some of us could experience a worthy improvement in battery life with a future software update.